Judge Denies Restraining Order to Keep Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Open

Judge Denies Restraining Order to Keep Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Open

A federal judge has denied a restraining order aimed at keeping medical marijuana dispensaries open in Costa Mesa and Lake Forest while the court considers a lawsuit filed on behalf of four MedMar Patient Care Collective patients and based on the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA).

The Daily Pilot has the scoop.

As we reported here, the Law Office of Matthew Pappas in Mission Viejo this week filed Marla James, et al vs. The City of Costa Mesa, California, et al. in the U.S. District Court in Santa Ana "to enjoin the cities of Costa Mesa and Lake Forest from preventing access to medical marijuana collective dispensaries."

It was filed on behalf of Marla James, Wayne Washington, James Armantrout and Charles Daniel DeJong, who are disabled Orange County residents who treat their ailments with medical marijuana from the MedMar collective.

MedMar is one of the Costa Mesa dispensaries city officials slapped with cease-and-desist orders last month.

The patients' suit alleges that "by conducting police and code enforcement raids, shutting down collectives, harassing patients and collective operators the Plaintiffs are effectively denied access to public services as provided for under the ADA."

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for April 26.

Costa Mesa Mayor Allan Mansoor, who is running for a state Assembly seat, reportedly greeted the news of the judge tossing out the temporary restraining order request.

"Not everyone is operating within state law," he told the Pilot, "and that seems to be lost in some of the arguments that some of the supporters of medical marijuana are making."

State law allows registered medical marijuana patients to cultivate, possess and use cannabis, and they can grow and distribute the weed amongst themselves if they belong to a patient collective like MedMar.

But the city of Costa Mesa has outlawed medical marijuana dispensaries since 2005, and police and code enforcement officers have cracked down on those operating within city limits since February.


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